The Rock

The Rock

I was up early for a ride to The Rock aka Gibraltar. We had about a 2 hour bus ride there to meet up with our British guides. In case you didn’t know Gibraltar is part of the UK and you have to cross the border between Spain and Gibraltar, showing your passport. Our Spanish bus was not allowed to cross, so it dropped us off and we cross the border on foot.

Our 2 guides were great women, Karen and Julie. We had to split the group up as the roads are soo narrow they have to us smaller busses. Seriously I’m not sure how the driver did it especially with a stick shift. Every car and walls had scrapes because its so narrow and I doubt the clutch lasts more than 3 years the roads are so steep.

So when crossing into Gibraltar you actually walk across their airport runway. That was the only place it could fit, and there is a posted schedule of when the planes arrive and take off so you know when to not be crossing. There are alerts and all traffic stops. We were in the second group for the bus and because of the traffic near the airport it took us 45 minutes to start our tour.

Looking out over Spain

Looking out over Spain

First stop was the WW II tunnels that are built in to the rock – over 30 miles of tunnel! It was thought that Hitler would want to take the island as it has a strategic location in the Mediterranean. Luckily that never happened, and most of the tunnels are still reserved for the military. Only a small bit is open to the public but it was really neat to see. They had a whole city inside the rock where 30,000 people could stay if needed. It is said that there are more tunnels than roads on Gibraltar.

Next we went to the Great Siege Tunnels that were finished in 1779 and were built to defend the rock from the Spanish. There were big rooms that had spaces for cannons to shoot out of the harbor.

It was in these tunnels that we finally met up with the other group! At the entrance of these tunnels were the Barbary macaques (apes) that are on the island. They are pretty cute but apparently can get annoying. They are really good at stealing food which we learned later.

Ape!

Ape!

After these tunnels we were off to St Michaels cave one of the many natural caves in the rock. It was here while we visited a snack shop that someone had their sandwich stolen right out of their hands by one of the apes! I kept my snack bar close and ate it fast, lol. The cave was prepped as an emergency hospital in WW II and now is used as an auditorium with seats built in. It was really neat.

We were then brought back down into the town where we had 20 minutes to browse around before having to walk back across the border and get back on the bus to Cadiz. We were a little late to on ship time but it worked out. Relaxed the rest of the night.

One Thought on “Day 39: Gibraltar

  1. Always amazes me what engineers can create! How exciting to see an underground city….I bet we have our own underground “towns”, but doubt we give tours….:>)

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